You may hear horror stories about cases where people in Kew Gardens saw their babies sustain injuries due to the use of forceps or vacuum extractors during delivery. Indeed, many of those that come to see us here at Futterman, Sirotkin and Seinfeld, LLP bemoan the fact that assisted delivery is even an option for doctors to consider. However, the fact that tools and procedures have been created to help assist in the delivery process may speak to their need. You simply need to understand when assisted delivery should be considered.
Assisted delivery techniques help to avoid the potential for complications that may arise due to prolonged labor. Ultimately, their main purpose is to avoid having to deliver a baby via C-section. While you, like many others, may view having a C-section as a perfectly acceptable solution, it should be remembered that such a procedure is still a complex surgery. The risk of complications may be heightened even further if an emergency C-section is required after you have labored.
According to The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, an assisted vaginal delivery should be considered if you suffer from a medical condition that prevents you from safely laboring, or the progression of your labor has stopped after you having pushed for a prolonged period of time. It should also be an option if your baby registers an abnormal heart rate.
Even still, the ACOG states that a number of safety factors should be met before your doctor considers intervening in your delivery. These are:
- Your cervix should be fully dilated
- Your baby’s head should have descended to your pelvis
- What your baby’s weight is
- Whether or not he or she is actually in the birth canal
More information on delivery safety standards can be found here on our site.